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Should smoke/steam ever be coming from my brand new HP CP-1215 Laser Jet printer while printing, given that there are hot parts internally?

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No, this is definitely not a standard operating thing. Unplug the printer ASAP, and bring it back to the store where you bought it from (and hope they give you a new one). This seems like a very serious safety issue. I have never personally seen a laser printer "smoke" or produce "steam" during operation. Furthermore, I have a similar model printer, which has not done anything like that from day one.

For your own personal safety, make sure you stay far away from any stray gasses/smoke/steam that has been emitted from the printer, as these are known toxins.

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It could be steam off damp paper stock... – Majenko Mar 6 '11 at 9:37
    
@Matt Damp paper is going to do nothing good for the quality of output or the printer. – Richard Mar 6 '11 at 10:25
    
You're bang on the button there ;) – Majenko Mar 6 '11 at 10:27
    
@Matt Jenkins: Sounds like an answer which seems like it should be posted as one. – C.W.Holeman II Mar 6 '11 at 14:56
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@C.W.Joleman II yes but it all comes under the heading of this answer... even if it's 'just' damp paper it's still not a good idea to use it. And if the paper's damp, that doesn't say much for the environment the printer's in, so I would be inclined to unplug it anyway ASAP. – Majenko Mar 6 '11 at 14:59

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